Pandemic threats are increasing in frequency and severity due to climate change and human activities, posing an existential threat to economies, achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the collective security and survival of humanity. As exposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Africa is particularly vulnerable to pandemic threats with its fragile health systems, inequities in access to healthcare, and reliance on imported medical supplies. Climate change is also altering the distribution of vectors and pathogens and human activities, such as deforestation, encroachment on wildlife habitats, and intensive farming are also leading to an increase in the number of zoonotic diseases.
In April 2023, Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) launched Africa’s New Public Health Order, a long-term vision for a more resilient, inclusive, and equitable African public health system, requiring sustained commitments from African leaders and the international community to achieve it.
Led by Pandemic Acton Network’s African Civil Society Working Group, more than 50 African civil society organizations call on African leaders to bring new urgency and political resolve to prevent the next pandemic crisis. Together, we call for leaders to commit to the following agenda for action to prevent the next pandemic crisis and secure progress towards Africa CDC’s vision for a New Public Health Order:
- Secure additional, long-term domestic financing needed to close critical pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response funding gaps in Africa
- Address current global imbalances by augmenting Africa’s collective voice on global health matters and building regional and global partnerships
- Critically expand local health product manufacturing in Africa — currently only 1% of the continent’s human vaccine needs manufactured on the continent
- Make African health systems gender responsive, and pandemic- and climate-resilient
We call for progress on these actions to be prioritized with reporting back at the Africa Union’s annual general assembly. Leaders must deliver on the agenda to protect Africa and humanity from another devastating pandemic crisis, and build a more resilient, inclusive, and equitable public health system.
Read the full call-to-action.
If your civil society organization is based in Africa and is interested in signing on, reach out to Aminata Wurie.